Author(s): Tay JH, Chen XG, Jeyaseelan S, Graham N
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Abstract Preparation of activated carbon from sewage sludge is a promising way to dispose of sewage sludge as well as to produce a low-cost adsorbent for pollutant removal. This research work aimed to optimise the condition for activated carbon preparation from anaerobically digested sewage sludge with the additive coconut husk. The sewage sludge sample was mixed with the additive coconut husk. The preparation condition variables investigated involved the concentration of the ZnCl2 solutions, heating temperature, dwell time and heating rate in pyrolysis and the mixing ratio of coconut husk to sewage sludge. Surface area, pore size distribution, aqueous phenol adsorption capacity and the production yield of the final products were determined and compared. Experimental results revealed that low concentrations of ZnCl2 solution tended to improve the microporosity of the final product. Heating temperature had a considerable impact on the surface area, pore size distribution and phenol adsorption capacity of the final products, whereas dwell time and heating rate performed comparatively insignificantly. The effect of increasing the mixing ratio of coconut husk to sewage sludge was principally to increase the microporosity of the final products. The activated carbon with the highest BET surface area was produced with the activation of 5 M ZnCl2 solution and, thereafter, pyrolysis at a heating temperature of 500 degrees C for 2 h with a heating rate of 10 degrees C/min. The mixing ratio of 1:4 in terms of coconut husk to sewage sludge based on their dried weights was found to be most cost effective.
This article was published in Chemosphere
and referenced in Journal of Bioremediation & Biodegradation